There’s been a lot of focus on London’s world-class Olympic venues, but the queues for tickets – some up to nine hours long – are just as impressive. So say Britain’s queue aficionados who have been eagerly awaiting the Olympic-sized queues ever since the Games were awarded to London in 2005.
“These are the best I’ve seen,” said Roger Twidley from Cornwall who has travelled to London for the ‘once-in-a-lifetime’ queues. “There’s just such a sense of organisation and everything being in its place. Sure, some people have been waiting most of the day, but no-one can complain that they’ve been served out of order. It really is fantastic”. He added “That red curly sculpture thing near the stadium that everyone is ooing and aahing over might be big, but trust me, the queues are much, much bigger”.
Rupert Grigg has been queuing since 1952 – not literally standing in a queue since then, that would be ridiculous – rather that was the year he first took part in what he now calls his ‘guilty pleasure’. Prior to this week his favourite queue was at the Croydon Post Office in the lead up to Christmas 1972. “Everyone was served in such an orderly fashion,” he says. But he reckons the London 2012 queues are superior. “There’s a real international flavour about it,” he says.
Adrian Jones waited in a pre-purchased ticket queue for four hours this morning. Asked what event he will be attending he said “Oh, I don’t have tickets to anything. I’m just queuing to be part of it all. Once I get to the front, I just nip to the back again!” In fact, it is estimated that roughly half of all queuers at the London Olympics don’t actually have any intention of buying tickets.
Troops brought in to bolster security at the games have also been caught up in the queuing excitement, with many spontaneously queuing up for nothing in particular.
London Mayor Boris Johnson said that when he encouraged all Britons to get into the spirit of the Olympic Games, this is what he had in mind.
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